Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Cheesecake Bites

I am a huge fan of cute desserts that taste good and are quick to make. I made these little guys for a party back in December, but just ran across the photo of them here. So quick and easy!

Start with phyllo tart shells - they come in packs of 12 or 15 in the freezer case at the grocery store. Bake them as directed on the box. Mix together 1 8oz container of whipped cream cheese, and 1 smaller container of marshmallow fluff. Put filling mixture into a plastic bag, then cut off the tip to make a makeshift piping bag. After the shells have cooled, pipe mixture into each shell and top with a quarter of a strawberry, or whatever topping you wish. These are delicious, and adorable. Plus they only take about 10 minutes total. A crowd pleaser!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sausage Bowtie Pasta

Up until a year ago or so, you couldn't have paid me to eat smoked sausage. Then one day, I visited my mom as she cooked limitless amounts of smoked sausage for a huge breakfast. It smelled heavenly, so I stole a small bit out of the pan. Then another. Just one more. Now I love it! I love it so much that I've found a way to work it into a dinner treat.

I start by chopping the smoked sausage into thin discs and cooking it in a skillet until the edges and sides caramelize. Then I add not-quite-perfectly-done bowtie pasta, a cup or so of pasta cooking liquid, a little chicken stock, a little white wine, some frozen peas and corn, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper flake. Reduce until the pasta is tender and the liquid becomes a sauce. Its a great, quick weeknight meal!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Chicken Tortilla Soup

I love a good crock pot meal. Don't get me wrong - I love all cooking methods, but something about coming home to your house being filled with the aromas of long-cooked meals is just fantastic to me. This morning I prepped dinner in the crock pot and then proceeded about my day of laundry, spring cleaning, and some work. 8 hours later, here is delicious chicken tortilla soup!

Into the crock pot: 1/2 diced onion, 2 boxes of chicken stock, 1 can crushed tomatoes, 1 can diced green chiles, garlic powder, chili powder, 1 lb diced chicken breast, 1 can black beans, 1 cup corn kernals. I even threw 3/4 cup of rice in the pot, and it turned out fab. Add fresh avacado at the end, and voila! Easy dinner.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

'Nanna Pudd'n

I am not a fan of banana pudding. I am generally not a fan of anything that involves soggy cookies. However, my family and friends love it, so I like to make it on occasion as a treat.

I've been looking for ways to jazz it up and make it a little different, and I think I've finally found one I like. I blended up wafer cookies, macadamia nuts, a tiny bit of sugar, and a tiny bit of salt together in my food processor, then mixed with butter to make a crust. After a quick bake and cool, I filled the bottom with banana slices, then french vanilla pudding, and topped it off with some whole cookies.

Turned out pretty well! The picture above is a dish of 'nanna pudd'n I made for our Easter feast.